July 23, 2011
The Journalistic Freedoms Observatory condemns the kidnapping of Saadallah al-Khalidi, photojournalists, while covering the protests in Tahrir Square- central of Baghdad- on Friday morning. A group of military men kidnapped him and was severely beaten.
Al-Khalidi, released ten hours later, told the JFO that he was kidnapped by a group of civilian men belongs to the military intelligence. Many federal police officers tried to set him free but in vain.
Other journalists at the scene confirmed to the JFO, that the cameraman Saadallah al-Khalidi was kidnapped by a group of more than 10 men dressed in civilian clothes and put him inside a green color car escorted by two other civilian trucks.
Al-Khalidi, was severely torture, threatened to be killed and a weapon put on his head while he was blindfolded and hands tied to the back. He explained "In their attempt to scare me,one of them laid me on the ground with my eyes blindfolded and hands tied to my back, another guy asked the first one to stay away from me to avoid the flow of my blood after shooting my head”
Al-Khalidi, works for "Al-Mustaqbal" Iraqi newspaper and NINA news agency, added “the investigation focused on my work as a journalist. They held me in a small room at the Intelligence Office of Al-Kadhimiya. Lately, they took me in a military vehicle and set me free at the monarchy cemetery area of Al-Adhamiya.
The Journalistic Freedoms Observatory condemns all kinds of oppressions and attacks against journalists by the military and security forces and called on the Supreme Judicial Council and the Iraqi parliament to address such serious issues.
JFO calls on the Iraqi Prime Minister to intervene and put an end to such practices because they adversely affect the reputation of Iraq and the democratic process in general.